February 8, 2009

Tech wins second straight, tops Morehead State by four

COOKEVILLE, Tenn. – Meagan Lyons netted 21 points, Jasmine White had a double-double, and the Tennessee Tech women’s basketball team led from start-to-finish on the way to landing a 71-67 Ohio Valley Conference victory over Morehead State Saturday night in Eblen Center. Tech had a commanding 38-29 edge in rebounds, limiting the visiting Eagles to just three offensive boards on the way to getting their second consecutive win. The Golden Eagles improved to 6-18 overall and 4-9 inside the OVC.

Morehead State, which beat Tech by 12 in Morehead in January, slipped to 14-11 overall and 8-5 in the OVC.

White had 12 points and 10 rebounds, along with four of Tech’s nine steals. She made two clutch free throws with 20 seconds remaining and the Golden Eagles clinging to a two-point lead. Those made it 71-67, and Blair Bowens added one final free throw with four seconds remaining for the final margin.

Lyons was the game’s top scorer with 21 points, going 9-for-15 from the field. She also led Tech with four assists and swiped the ball twice.

Jasmine White had 12 points and 10 rebounds
Freshman Tacarra Hayes also scored in double figures for Tech with 11, along with five rebounds. Bowens, who was recognized in pregame ceremonies for surpassing 1,000 career points in Thursday night’s game, finished with nine points and five boards.

Morehead State had three players in double figures, led by Chynna Bozeman with 16, Brittany Pittman had a double-double with 14 points and 11 rebounds. She also had four assists, four blocked shots and two steals. Tiffany Hamilton scored 11 points for the Eagles. Courtney Lumpkin had nine points and a game-high five assists for MSU.

Tech opened with a 6-1 spurt to get the game underway, and had a lead of 11 points with 7:24 to go in the first half. MSU cut it to four points on a 3-pointer by Bozeman and four consecutive free throws.

Tech scored an 8-0 run to regain the double-digit advantage, going up 31-19 as Lyons and White hit back-to-back jumpers and Lyons added two free throws. Tech’s lead at the half was 12 points, 37-25.

After Bozeman hit a 3-pointer to start the second half, Tech got the crowd of 1,114 to its feet quickly afterward with a 7-0 run to increase its lead to 16 points, the largest of the game, at 44-28 with 18:10 remaining.

But Morehead State fought back, using a 12-1 run to cut Tech’s lead down to 45-40, with 14:16 to play. Two minutes later, MSU was within three points, 49-46. The Eagles were within three one more time a minute later, but Tech never relinquished its lead.

Morehead hung close, getting two free throws by Erica Coleman with 1:56 to play to trim Tech’s 69-63 lead town to 69-65. After a missed TTU free throw, Lumpkin scored a layup with 44 seconds left to make it a two-point game, 69-67.

White missed the front of a one-and-one with 29 seconds left, but Tech got a key rebound at the other end, got the ball ahead to White, who was fouled. She converted both free throws this time.

Tech hits the road this week for games at Murray State Thursday night and UT Martin Saturday.